Not a Minute to Spare Over the Weekend

The blue flags can only mean one thing!

I did a lot of horsey things over the weekend, and also some family things (because Mother’s Day, duh). I didn’t do a great job of documenting any of it, mostly because I stayed on the move constantly all weekend. I think it’s a balance to the desk job taking up a little too much time lately — I fit as much fun stuff in as I can on the weekends without trying to wear myself out completely.

sunset from patentlybay on Vimeo.

Horses all day Saturday, and horses all day Sunday. But that’s what everyone does, right? It’s nothing to pat myself on the back about, especially because it significantly benefits my mental health. Why wouldn’t you live this way if you love horses? I would do it seven days a week if I could. (Except that with preexisting conditions, employer-sponsored health insurance gets REAL important.)

The well-seasoned horse show families bring shade and beverages.

Do you fill up your spare time exclusively with horses? Would you ever consider a horse-related professional position?

22 thoughts on “Not a Minute to Spare Over the Weekend

  1. Since I have 5 horses at my house you could say that I fill all my spare time with horses! Even spare time I don’t have! I would love to have a horse-related profession, but right now I’m happy to have an employer (or boss at least) who gets my horse-related obsession and allows for some flexibility in that regard.

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  2. Eeeeeevery once in a while I take the day off to just go home straight after work instead of the barn. And then I end up sitting on the couch, staring into space, wondering what people do with their lives without an all-consuming hobby.

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  3. I spend every spare minute at the barn lately. I’ve been schooling other people’s horses too (for a while I was regularly schooling 4 horses besides my own). I am currently considering doing something professionally.
    I’ve been a grad student for the last few years and the desk work is leaving me twitchy and anxious. I NEED the barn time to stay centered. The blog I just started is actually all about this topic.

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    • Forgive the little plug. This post was just SO ON POINT. I’m basically in the middle of trying to decide between being a scientist or being a profession equestrian of some sort and spending many, many hours at the barn. Much to the annoyance of my fiance, ha

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      • I totally understand! I prolonged grad school for as long as I could get away with so I could ride multiple horses a day and go to shows. No matter what you decide, you can always decide differently later–you’re in charge of changing your life, no one else (um, maybe don’t let your fiancé see this haha)

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        • Well, my funding runs out this summer. And really I just have writing left. So grad school is ending soon whether I like it or not. And my fiance is fine, we did carve out a DOES NOT GO TO THE BARN day (aka date night) for him.

          I’m applying all over. The real decision right now is, will I start working towards professional horse stuff or not. I wouldn’t be able to dive right in. I will get some experience on my friend’s sale horses this summer, which, if nothing else, will be fun.

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  4. I was able to get in good rides this weekend and spend Sunday afternoon and evening planting my MIL’s garden ❤ Can't wait for strawberry rhubarb jam and fresh salads from the garden!

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  5. I’d love a career in the horse industry, but you really nailed it with insurance/benefits/pay. It really goes against my more practical nature to take a jump like that. For now I just go to the barn 6 days/week and ride my pony and help with chores.

    As an industry I wonder what the future is because so many people seem to feel this way. A lot of really talented riders slide into the adult ammy role instead of trainer (or whatever else).

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    • I wonder about that, too. Especially since health care in this country is political. It’s instructive to see the horse industry in European countries in particular — they seem to have a little more support than here.

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      • Yes, I’m very interested to see where it ends up in the next several years (hopefully the next group in charge is a little less politically biased but I don’t actually see that happening for a hot minute). Until then I’ll keep a ‘regular’ job and be safer.

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        • Lack of healthcare support scares me the most right now. I’d like to do something professional (part training youngsters, part breeding, part hosting events, etc). But especially starting out, I can’t just forgo health insurance. Plus I’ll need extra liability insurance. My agent said for coverage to be paid to ride (a few) horses would be $1k a year. Granted one of the trainers I know thinks her agent could get me a better quote, but either way, yikes.

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  6. I spend a lot of time looking after my 2 horses. I don’t know if I would enjoy being a horse professional at this point in my life but when I was younger? For sure. Now I’m looking forward to retirement so I can spend time with my horses all day. 🙂 Not sure how they feel about it

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  7. I realized a long time ago that I did not have the talent for the horsey jobs I would want (rider/big league trainer), and I didn’t want to make the horsey jobs I could do (barn manager, walk/trot trainer) my career. But then I chose a career that is supposed to pay for the horsey time (accounting). Unfortunately, right now with a toddler, launching the career, and beating new property into shape, time has been precious and horse time has been squeezed. I think of it as an investment though – career improvements equals more money. Time spent on property equals better turnout and an arena space. And the toddler… umm, future barn help?

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